Written for the lovely Carla in honor of my sixth writing anniversary. She asked for more Willow/Booth and gave me a hell of a prompt. Insomnia provided inspiration. I hope you like this, sweetie! Thanks be to Elisabeth for the beta.
Seeley looked at Willow in disbelief. “You’re not serious, are you?”
Willow’s eyes welled with tears, but didn’t spill over. She took a shuddering breath and said, “I’m afraid so.”
Seeley shook his head and muttered, “I’ve seen the programs on the History Channel, but thought they were bullshit. Even Hodgins dismissed them and you know how he is.”
Willow nodded. “Most of the time, those kinds of shows are crap, but this one they got right. Well, kinda right. They got the date right anyway. We’re still more than a little fuzzy on the how.”
“And there’s no way to stop it?”
Willow closed her eyes and her shoulders slumped. She looked so defeated it made Seeley’s heart clench. He gathered her close and rocked her gently. It was a few minutes before she spoke.
“We’ve searched everything we have, exhausted every lead and contact. We can’t even determine if it’s demonic or natural. We just know we can’t stop it.”
Seeley thought about everything he’d learned about the world since he met Willow. All the times she and her friends had stood between the Earth and certain destruction and the world never knew. And it was all coming down to something no one could fight.
REM’s ‘It’s the End of the World as We Know It’ started playing in his head and Seeley started to laugh. He couldn’t help it. Everything Willow and her friends had done, everything he and Bones and the rest of the Squints had accomplished, and it all meant squat.
Willow pulled away from his embrace and looked at him like he’d lost his mind. Maybe he had, but he didn’t think so. “Seeley?” she asked hesitantly.
He shook his head and did his best to get himself under control. “It’s either laugh or go crazy, baby.”
Willow thought about that and had to agree. “You know, that’s kind of an unofficial motto for us.”
“It’s a good one to have,” he said as he pulled her back against him. He gave her a lingering kiss then whispered, “We’ve got three months. How do you want to spend them?”
“With our family and friends,” she answered without hesitation.
Seeley thought that was a damn fine way to spend their last months on Earth. “I think I’ll give Sully a call, see if he’s gotten a bigger boat. Once this goes public I really don’t think I want to be anywhere near DC. I think we should gather everyone and just cruise until it’s time. What do you think?”
Willow was already nodding her head. “I think the Council can swing a cruise ship. Being away from…” she trailed off and looked at him in distress. “I can’t believe we’re talking about just walking away, that we even think it will be possible.”
Seeley shook his head. “We’ve earned it. The Scoobies, the Slayers, the Council, me and Bones and the Squints, and anyone else we want to be with us, we deserve the chance to spend our last days on Earth as we please. You say there’s no way to stop this and I believe you. Let someone else fight a losing battle now. It’s time to rest.”
She got what he was saying, she really did, but that it was Seeley Booth saying it was time to let go was throwing her for a loop. Maybe knowing the end of the world was unavoidably approaching had broken him. Maybe knowing that had broken her, too. And maybe she should quit analyzing and accept the inevitable. They were going to die in three months time and she should enjoy what time they had left.
Willow looked up at the man she loved and said, “December 21, 2012. The end of the world. Want to spend it together?”
Seeley closed his eyes and bent to press his forehead to hers. Hearing her say it like that made it really real. Knowing that didn’t change his answer, though.
“It’s a date.”